Bubbyswhollycow’s Weblog


A Word About Salt
June 5, 2008, 5:12 pm
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Since my formal education was limited to a mere 2 weeks of college, it is easy to state at any point that I am not an expert on much. But salt is something I know a little about. For example, the word salary shares the same root as salt. Roman soldiers were paid in salt. Salt was a big deal before refrigeration, used as a preservative. It is also very good on meat. Nothing makes a crust like salt. The tiny crystals act like little griddles and micro-sear the little micro meat particles. Yummm. So that is my historical and scientific analysis of salt.

Today 6 pounds of Grey Sea Salt from Brittany arrived. There is salt and there is salt. This is the latter. The crystals are almost the size of small rock salt, but the mixture is still moist. When you take a piece in your mouth it explodes into a sea wind on a rocky beach, right on your tongue. It’s like friendly D-day, an invasion of foreign friendlies right on the beach in your mouth. That’s just tasting the salt out of the bag. When a good steak, roast, or other comestible is seasoned with this salt, something happens chemically that cannot be explained. It’s like the heat, the salt, the juice from the flesh of the steak, they all come together to form this succulent, crusty, flavor pumping micro world of perfection. There is the crust, and then there are the little kernels of salt flowers within the crust. These one subtly notices with a smile. The juice, which has been sealed inside, is slowly released as you chew. You want to chew slowly. Sometimes you forget to because you want another bite. It is absolutely worth the effort to find great salt. And it is not necessary to spend $40 a pound for it. The salt we found was about $6 a pound with shipping, which is still dear, but doable.

Tonight’s flank steak will be seasoned with the new salt, a little garlic, rosemary, lemon juice. Yummm.

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